We tested the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4. Here are our thoughts.
The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 is a flawed genius. It’s thick and heavy, it could have a better battery, and omg, it’s expensive. If you can get past all of that, there’s a ton of treasure unearthed while you’re using it. Its switch between a large inner screen and a small cover display gives the phone versatility and bridges the gap between smartphones and tablets. As such, it’s great for watching, reading, and launching productivity-oriented apps. In the end, if you’re willing to carry around a really big phone and pay a premium for the innovative folding tech on display here, the Z Fold 4 is a pretty impressive device.
The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 is one of the most unusual and exciting devices we’ve seen in 2022. It folds open to reveal a large screen that oddly places it between a phone and a tablet. This big screen is a fun multitool, and we thoroughly enjoyed testing it.
We’ve given this phone a long hands-on test, and we’re ready to pass judgment and answer the most important question: Is it worth your money?
Read on for our thoughts, or use the links below to follow specific aspects of the phone’s performance or the latest pricing.
What is the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4?
Samsung recently unveiled two impressive foldable devices, and this is the larger of the two, dwarfing the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 4 . It’s a large smartphone that folds in half, which means you get a bigger display when you open it up.
There’s also a smaller “cap screen” for one-handed use. That’s great for quickly replying to messages or taking photos, but you should turn the device on and take advantage of the nice, large internal display for more detailed work.
How much will the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 cost?
Perhaps the biggest downside of the Samsung Galaxy Z Fold 4 is its hefty price tag. Prices start at £1,649 for 256GB of storage and 12GB of RAM, start at £1,769 for 512GB of storage, and go up to £2,019 for the 1TB version. This is an expensive phone.
However, it’s pretty much unique in the UK market at the moment. Huawei makes similar foldable devices in other markets, along with Microsoft’s Surface Duo 2 — which received mixed reviews at launch but was improved with software fixes. Beyond that, however, the Fold 4 is now more or less in a class of its own. That doesn’t necessarily mean it’s great, but if you want this particular type of device, your options are limited.
Z fold 4 major functions
The Z Fold 4 is a powerful package with 12GB of RAM and a Snapdragon 8 Plus Gen 1 chipset running Android 12L — the version of Android 12 for larger-screen devices — with Samsung’s One UI overlay. It’s silky smooth to use, and all the great features make multitasking easy and fairly intuitive.
There are also many durable features for your peace of mind. With an IPX8 waterproof rating, the cover and back are made of Gorilla Glass Victus Plus.
Freestanding screens bring new levels of customization and versatility. For example, you can have completely different home screens with a cover screen and a larger inner screen.
It also has stereo speakers, dual SIM slots, 5G connectivity and up to 15W wireless charging.
Z-Fold 4 display
The display is both a phone’s greatest asset and its most frustrating shortcoming, depending on how well you handle creases, fingerprint magnetization characteristics, and how much you value having a bigger tablet display everywhere.
Notably, the material used for the folding display is thinner, more flexible, and easier to mark than conventional smartphone screens. We found this very frustrating, but it’s by no means a huge drawback.
The foldable 7.6-inch AMOLED panel offers a 120 Hz refresh rate and HDR10+. If you don’t mind endless fingerprints and creases, it’s really, really impressive. Streaming content from Netflix, YouTube, and Amazon is suddenly more engaging than it is on the smaller, traditional smartphone screen. It also helps with tasks like photo editing or reading, and while an S-Pen isn’t included, it’s compatible with note-taking pens.
Z Fold 4 Batteries
Despite its size, the Fold 4 doesn’t offer a particularly large battery. It also has multiple displays – and possibly app multitasking – powering it. The 4400mAh battery can be charged at a maximum speed of 25W, which is not lightning fast. Also, power supply is not included.
The battery is fine, and in our experience with light to moderate use, the battery can get through the day. If you’re running down performance and want to keep it going longer, a small external monitor is your friend. While that’s a huge improvement over the previous Fold, we can’t say battery life or charging is the Fold 4’s strong suit.
It’s compatible with at least 15W of wireless charging, but overall battery performance is middling.
Z-Fold 4 camera
The rear camera array is an improvement over the Galaxy Fold 3. A new 50-megapixel sensor is joined by a 12-megapixel ultrawide and a 10-megapixel telephoto snapper.
There is also a 4 MP under-display camera and a 10 MP camera on the cover display.
With five sensors at your fingertips, you won’t be short of a camera. However, some of them perform better than others, and in the end it’s best to forget about the under-display camera.
There’s also 3x optical zoom and 30x digital zoom, but the latter doesn’t quite match the quality of the Samsung Galay S22 Ultra, which offers a better overall camera system.
Ultimately, while the Fold 4 is sleek, powerful, and impressive, it still represents innovative technology that hasn’t been perfected yet. If you have the budget to pay for it and find it attractive enough to accept its minor flaws, it’s worth considering buying.